comfort in my skin

I’m not fat. I’m skinny. I’m not skinny. I’m fat.

It’s different every single day. Some days, I like my body more than usual. Other days, I hate every single part of my body and want to tear myself apart.

I haven’t always had a love-hate relationship with my body. In all honesty, I don’t know when it began. I just remember looking in the mirror one day and being so unsatisfied. I went through days of binge eating and then days where I couldn’t eat anything at all. I remember eating things and then suddenly reminding myself that I was fat and I would spit it all out. I was never content with my body anymore. I tried exercising, but once I saw no progress, I lost the will to continue. I tried eating healthier, but once again, no progress. I was impatient. I needed to see that I was getting thinner right away. I needed to know that I wasn’t wasting my time with this (which I knew deep down I wasn’t). I could never talk to anyone about this affair I had with my body. No one took it seriously. They all told me that I looked fine, that I wasn’t fat, that I should be happy with my body, that all I needed was exercise. But they didn’t understand me. No one understood the constant fights I had in my mind. I didn’t want to feel this way, who does? I couldn’t control my thoughts, I couldn’t control the rising hatred I had for my body. I wanted to, but I couldn’t. I was screaming out for help inside, but no one heard my cries.

What was wrong with me? What is wrong with me? I’ll look at the number on the scale and break down internally. I’m not overweight, I know this. I know that my body mass index is in a healthy range. But why? Why can’t I be satisfied with what I look like?

I compare myself to people around me: my mom, my friends, my classmates, the people on television. It’s unhealthy to compare, yes, I know. But how can you not? Objectification functions to socialize us to treat ourselves as objects to be evaluated based on appearance. We learn through the people around us and society’s image that our bodies are the most important part of our identity. The photos of women and men thrown at us from the media disconnects us with them. We begin to think, “Why can’t I look like that model right there? Why don’t I look like that model?”

What I’m trying to come to terms with right now is: I will never be fully satisfied with my body if I base it on what I see in the media. What I do see in the media does not define what beauty is either. I can be happy with my body. I do not need to compare myself to others. Do not be discouraged just because results are not instant. Being healthy is most important. It’s a process that I’m currently flowing through. Who knows how long it’ll take for me to begin loving my body, but I‘m trying… I’m working on it.


be kind to your body. embrace your body. love your body.
Like what you read? Give Nicole Tong a round of applause.

From a quick cheer to a standing ovation, clap to show how much you enjoyed this story.